Have you noticed? Mercury glass is going to be big during the holidays this year! I know that some of you already have lovely collections and are saying…Great! But those of us who do not are faced with a dilemma!
Sooo…get comfortable and let’s get serious here. You know I’m a retired teacher and I feel teacher mode switching on. First…come sit at the table and have some homemade bread with me. Butter and jam? How about a cup of coffee or some tea? All comfy? OK...let’s talk!
First, I should say that what is sold today is actually faux mercury glass. The real deal actually had a silvered coating between two walls of blown glass. Over time, the coating would begin to wear off, thus the antiqued look. (For an interesting article on its history from Martha Stewart, click here.) Modern manufacturers have achieved that look by various methods. Usually, a gold or gray cast is added in spots to help the illusion. Here’s my problem…it’s expensive to build a collection from scratch! Sooo…
…I first decided to make my own. I used two different methods…from Martha Stewart Living and Room Recipes… and, although the photos on their sites looked good, my versions were generally…well…less than fabulous! Fortunately, I used cheap glassware I found at Goodwill for my experiments!
This is the Room Recipes version in daylight…minus the candle…with some faux mercury glass behind it. What do you think? OK…not great…so off to solution number two!
I decided to try to find some at Goodwill…and I must say that I was a lucky duck! I was able to find nine pieces over two days and spent a total of about $13…not bad! But there was another problem…this is the shiny stuff that was popular a couple of years ago! What to do?
I got out a sea sponge and some craft paint in soft black and created my own oxidized antique-y looking spots! I wet the sponge with water first and pressed it inside a folded paper towel to remove the moisture, then lightly touched it to the paint. I then tapped the sponge on a paper towel to remove the excess paint before I started. Then I added the spots in a random pattern on the candlestick.
And…taa daa! The best thing is that you can wipe it off and start over if you don’t like the result. I actually blotted the whole thing lightly with a wet paper towel when I was finished to keep it from looking smeared. I think this is a pretty good imitation of the real thing.
And here it is in a little vignette, along with the last of my ginger lilies. I brought them in before our first freeze and the whole house smells wonderful! Sooo…what do you think? The difference is subtle, but I like it. There’s still another problem, though. I am really limited as to shapes! These all look so squatty! So here’s solution number three…
…buy some! lol I would love to add some of these to my collection…especially the taller ones! So I did a price comparison to see if I could afford several of them. Note that the sizes are not identical, but it gave me an idea of a comparable cost.
Pier 1 - 12 1/2 inch candlestick…$28
Ballard Designs - 16 inch candlestick…$35
Pottery Barn - 14 1/2 inch candlestick…$39
Hmmm…I’d like to have four, so I would be looking at around at least $120! Yikes!
Then I found these! The one on the right is from Target and is 11 1/2 inches tall. It only costs $12.99! It will have a nice presence on the mantel. The one in the center is from Michaels and, at 14 inches tall, only costs $9.99! And…with a 50% off coupon, that’s only about $5.00! Woo hoo! It has a barley twist glass stem and a beautiful mercury glass globe with the antiqued detailing that I love! The one on the left is also from Michaels and was also $12.99…but that makes it about $6.50 with a 50% off coupon! I think it’s my favorite! So for about $25, I have three very different candlesticks!
Then I will mix them in with my antiqued Goodwill candlesticks to complete the look. You’ll be seeing more of these later! Whew! I’m glad that’s decided! I’ve been mulling that one over for several weeks! lol Now…tell me what you think and how you have taken care of that expensive mercury glass collecting addiction!
Thanks for stopping by! I hope you enjoyed a little peek at my project! Please visit these wonderful bloggers and their beautiful blogs to see what they are up to and to find a list of this week’s participants!
Kim at Savvy Southern Style for Before and After Party on Wednesdays
Gina at The Shabby Chic Cottage for Transformation Thursdays
Cindy at My Romantic Home for Show and Tell Friday
Artie at Color Outside the Lines for Vignette Fridays
Courtney at French Country Cottage for Feathered Nest Friday
Linda at A la Carte for Junkin' Finds on Fridays
Laurie at Bargain Hunting and Chatting with Laurie for A Few of My Favorite Things Saturday
Donna at Funky Junk Interiors for Saturday Nite Special
Stephanie Lynn at Under the Table and Dreaming for the Sunday Showcase Party
Susan at Between Naps on the Porch for Metamorphosis Monday
Marty at A Stroll Thru Life for Tabletop Tuesday
Linda at Coastal Charm for Nifty Thrifty Tuesday
See you next time! A la prochaine!